Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press (2020)

Catharine Abell
Oxford University
The aim of this book is to provide a unified solution to a wide range of philosophical problems raised by fiction. While some of these problems have been the focus of extensive philosophical debate, others have received insufficient attention. In particular, the epistemology of fiction has not yet attracted the philosophical scrutiny it warrants. There has been considerable discussion of what determines the contents of works of fiction, but there have been few attempts to explain how audiences identify their contents, or to identify the norms governing the correct understanding and interpretation of works of fiction. This book answers a wide range of both metaphysical and epistemological questions concerning fiction in a way that clarifies the relations between them. The metaphysical questions include: What distinguishes works of fiction from works of non-fiction?; What is the nature of fictive utterances?; What determines the contents of works of fiction?; What kinds of fictive content are there?; How broad in scope is fictive content?; and What kinds of things are fictional entities? The epistemological questions include: How do audiences identify the contents of authors’ fictive utterances?; How does understanding a work of fiction differ from interpreting it?; and What role does thinking and talking about fiction from an external perspective play in enabling communication through fiction? It develops the first single theory that provides answers to all these questions.
Keywords Fiction  Institutions  Fictive Utterances  Fictional characters  Interpretation  Truth in fiction
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ISBN(s) 0198831528   9780198831525
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Definition of Fiction: State of the Art.David Davies - 2022 - British Journal of Aesthetics 62 (2):241-255.
Fictions That Purport to Tell the Truth.Neri Marsili - forthcoming - Philosophical Quarterly.
Predelli on Fictional Discourse.Manuel García-Carpintero - 2022 - Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 80 (1):83-94.
‘Truth in Fiction’ Reprised.Manuel García-Carpintero - 2022 - British Journal of Aesthetics 62 (2):307-324.

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